Hello September, Back to School Routines & The Countdown To Christmas, Goodbye Sleep in’s and The Fight With Children’s Boredom!
I have recently been thinking of putting some kind of reward system in place for my daughter Emily who is 6. She is generally a good girl, but for a while now I”ve been seeing a lot more bad behaviour, ignorance, pushing the boundaries and being a little monster in general.
I expect its due to the long six weeks holidays (which thankfully end tomorrow! yayy) I have loved having her here with me all the time and we have been on many day trips and holidays but the more she slips out of the routine the harder life is becoming.
Anyway, I have been thinking about a new reward chart, we had one previously and it worked at the time but I think she has given up and grown out of it. I remember seeing on a Super Nanny episode some time ago a marble jar reward system which seemed effective and I really liked the idea of it.
Basically the idea is you have a bag of marbles/buttons/balls or anything you can find, I will be using straws (see below) that I have cut down and an empty jar.
A ‘straw’ is placed in the jar for good behaviour, When the jar is full she gets a reward, our first ‘jar full’ will earn her £5 she will take this to the pound shop and choose 5 items (toys, books, make up etc). I will also be using rewards such as a trip to the cinema, a magazine, making cakes, a trip to the seaside. Depending on what your child likes. I got Emily involved in choosing the rewards so she is excited about getting all the straws into the jar
You would need to specify exactly what earns a straw, I have a basic set of rules which I will specify below, but you can change them depending on what you’re trying to achieve and improve, so I’m going to use the straw/jar method to address the issues with my daughter which are basically sticking to the rules. Then if she is doesn’t stick to the rules or doesn’t do what she is supposed to, a straw gets removed. . I personally will be giving Emily a warning, if she then ignores I would remove a straw.
I have heard of people using 2 jars one for putting a marble when they do something good, and on for when they’re naughty, then at the end of say, a week, the jar with the most marbles will decide whether the child receives a reward or a punishment, though I have to say I don’t like this method personally. My daughter responds really well to praise and so I don’t like the idea of a naughty jar.
I have also heard of some people putting a small monetary value to each marble (straw), so at the end of a chosen length of time (ie a week), the marbles get added up and it equates to a certain amount of money which the child then gets to choose to either save (yeah right!!) or spend on a treat (sweets/toy maybe).
I have sat down with Emily and discussed the rules, the straw jar and the rewards so she has a full understanding of the concept.
So far she has went to bed on time, got up made her bed and started tidying the front room an helped make breakfast! The house seems much more peaceful today and we are preparing for the ‘Back to School Routine’
These are the rules I have set for Emily, I went through each rule and explained why it applies to her so she understands why she should or should not be doing it:
Be kind & helpful
Listen to people
Tidy up after yourself
Do as your told
Hurt people’s feelings
Damage or spoil/ruin things
Cover up the truth / tell lies
Make mess & not tidy it up
Eat with a fork
Sit up at table (no slouching, hiding under, jumping about etc)
Don’t put too much food in your mouth (you could choke and it looks nasty)
Don’t say rude things about the food being served (e.g ‘yuk, I’m not eating that’ it could hurt people’s feelings)
Eat/ chew with your mouth closed
Eat slowly not gobble it all up
Use a napkin (not your tongue or sleeve)
Say please & thank you.